Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Our Fantastic Favorites: Dark Lord of Derkholm

You know you’ve been reading a lot of fantasy fiction when every twist by Diana Wynne Jones gives you a dry chuckle and a knowing smile. Dark Lord of Derkholm still provides many of those chuckles for me on a return read as I rediscover Fantasy Land and the perils it faces at the hands of an extradimensional tourist agency. Before I ever saw fantasy worlds lampooned in a Discworld novel, I was sympathizing with the Wizard Derk and his struggle to put on a convincingly high-fantasy tour with all the required clich├ęs. It mixes just the right amount of narrative and metanarrative to tickle the funny bone, pull the heartstrings, and work the critical mind.